Reducing electricity consumption in order to save money is within reach of everyone. As long as you adopt the right habits and keep an eye on your electricity bill.
In Belgium, electricity bills include three main sections: the price per kWh and the annual fee (a kind of electricity subscription), network costs and, finally, taxes. As a consumer, the only element you can influence is the first component, and you can do this by choosing the best electricity deal based on your own criteria. But don’t panic – there are other ways of limiting your energy spending.
There’s no point trying to achieve a lower electric bill without talking about heating. It represents about 70% of a household’s energy consumption, and thus provides significant opportunities to save electricity.
The good news? There are a multitude of ways to reduce your heating costs. These include hunting down heat loss by insulating your home, limiting the ambient temperature in your living room to 19-20°C and keeping your equipment serviced.
If you have an electric water heater, take care with how you use it. Designed to keep water at a constant temperature, this type of appliance is known for being energy-guzzling. To limit the damage, set the temperature sensibly (55-60°C is enough), descale it regularly and switch it off when going away for more than 24 hours. A still better solution is to install a thermodynamic boiler by taking part in a group buy. More economical and environmentally friendly than electric models, it will consume less energy and recover heat from the air.
One of the key rules on how to save electricity at home is to use your washing machine and tumble dryer sparingly. Only put on a wash when you can fill the machine completely and air your washing outdoors whenever the weather allows.
What’s more, when buying new equipment, try to prioritise appliances with a good energy rating (green colour class). Another tip: avoid programmes that wash at 60 or 90°C. These high temperatures are energy-intensive, and often unnecessary.
Take note! Don’t confuse saving electricity with saving money! If you have a dual-rate meter, running your washing machine during the night or at weekends gives you the benefit of the night rate. On the other hand, the quantity of electricity you consume will be the same. Need more information? If you have any questions, ask our advisers by phone on 0800 37 456 or by email.
The kitchen can quickly become a place where energy spending is rife. Inappropriate use of the fridge or the freezer is often at fault.
To save power, choose household appliances with an energy rating of A – but that’s not all! It’s also vital to take their size into consideration. If you live alone, there’s no point buying a huge fridge just to refrigerate empty space. Always stick to what you need, because the bigger the fridge, the more energy it consumes. As a rule, when choosing a fridge, the advice is to count 60 litres per person.
And don’t forget that where you put your appliances also affects their consumption. A fridge or freezer placed next to a source of heat such as an oven will inevitably have to work harder to keep food cool. Have you just been cooking? Wait for food to cool down before putting it in the fridge. Finally, remember to defrost your freezer regularly, ideally every three months. A layer of ice three millimetres thick increases electricity consumption by about 30%.
Cooking is a great pleasure for many people, but wouldn’t it be even better if it was more economical? Especially as there are so many energy saving tips!
For example, get into the habit of:
Do you have a steamer? Good news if you want to save electricity! This type of appliance is very economical because it can cook several different foods at the same time with the steam produced at the bottom.
Having a dishwasher among your kitchen appliances is often seen as a luxury. A luxury that can cost a lot if it’s not used sensibly.
Ways to save electricity, apart from buying a green-rated appliance, start with choosing a model suited to your needs. Only consider a family version if the number of people in your household justifies it. Next, give preference to the economy programme and only start the programme when it is full. Otherwise, use the pre-wash programme instead.
Using the dishwasher isn’t even necessary much of the time. This is certainly true for lightly soiled dishes. Colanders, bowls, lids… they’re all fine with just a rinse in cold water! A handy way of reducing electricity bill payments!
It goes without saying that making the most of daylight is the best answer to how to save electricity on lighting. When thinking about redecorating or reorganising your home, consider how you can favour natural light.
Otherwise, use the following energy saving tips every day:
Want to make sure your efforts are bearing fruit? Calculate your electricity consumption now, and then again in a month’s time!
Leaving your mobile phone plugged in to the charger when you are not using it or it is fully charged is one of those bad habits that looks harmless but still increases your electricity consumption. The same goes for devices that are always left on standby, such as your television, stereo or microwave. Think about switching off your devices completely, and you will save precious kilowatt-hours! Worried you will forget? Invest in multiple-socket extension leads with an illuminated switch. Turning off the switch cuts the power to several devices at once.
Your computer can also help you achieve a lower electric bill if it’s set up properly. All you need to do is activate the energy-saving mode. Another tip is to reduce your screen’s brightness. As well as limiting eye strain, this solution makes the computer more energy-efficient.
To reduce electric bills, you can not only reduce your energy consumption; you can also act on your energy contract.
Many electricity deals are available in Belgium, all consumers are able to choose the one they think best. However, it can be difficult to decide, given the amount of comparison work to be done.
To make the task easier, you can use an electricity price comparison website. Free of charge, this kind of tool helps you to:
By signing up to the most competitive deal, you are bound to save money, as long as you do not start consuming more. Do you want to know more about how the comparison works, or do you need a hand to reduce your electricity bill? Our advisers are ready and waiting – call 0800 37 456 from Monday to Friday between 9 am and 12.30 pm or 1.30 and 5.30 pm.Respond!